Constantine is another movie that you probably haven’t seen.
This movie didn’t impress the critics, for whatever reason. (Too much reliance on Catholic iconography?) It also pissed off the fans of the Hellblazer comics/graphic novels, because it wasn’t very close to the original material. Why? Suits always know best, even when it is clear that they don’t.
It also suffers from wooden acting by Keanu Reeves, but I don’t mind it so much in this case, because John Constantine, at least as he appears in the movie, is not supposed to be likable.
So. John Constantine is an exorcist who stumbles into a plan by son of Satan to unleash the apocalypse for his own gain. I thought it was well done, given the constraints of making a Hollywood movie. Mostly dealing with suits in the movie industry, who don’t understand comics, or much of anything really, and creative decisions made by committee. Still, I like this movie enough to own a DVD copy, and I do pull that out every once in a while.
The supporting cast is great. It includes Rachel Weisz as the detective investigating a situation, and Shia LaBeouf as Constantine’s apprentice. It isn’t the best performance of LaBeouf’s career, but he might just be the shining light in this cast. Oh, and Tilda Swinton as Gabriel, in yet another gender-bending role for Swinton.
This isn’t great cinema. It isn’t even great horror. Great Horror would be John Carpenter’s Vampires. Well, that would be a great Vampire movie.
Most of the scenes available on YouTube are spoilers. If Constantine has a problem it is with pacing, but it tells an interesting story. The trailer doesn’t give much away, but I’m not sure it does justice to the movie. Still it does give you a flavor of what is going on. Anyway, Constantine. You might enjoy it. I have no idea if it is streaming anywhere like Amazon Prime, but I wouldn’t be surprised…
Update: If you do see the film, don’t miss the extra scene at the end of the credits.